Monday, November 17, 2014

Author Interview: Ritoban Chakrabarti author of When She Smiled

Ritoban Chakrabarti, author of the book When She Smiled, stopped by for an interview.

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I like to call myself a jack of all trades. I want to live a complete life following the goals I've set in my dream board. I don't believe in making lots of money. I don't believe happiness depends on my bank balance. I believe in leaving a legacy in this short life of mine. In the last eight years, I've taken up several roles. Programmer, Manager, Entrepreneur, HR, PR, Editor, Marketer, and now, a writer. Writing a novel has been on my dreamboard for a while, and its checked off now. 

What do you do when you're not writing?

When I'm not writing, I'm working on new technologies and marketing strategies that we implement in my startup, MarkAce; apart from managing my team, and handling operations. I love travelling, and try to get as many vacations as possible.

I also love karaoke, and I'm seriously considering taking that seriously and release a music album in 2015. Let's hope that goes well.

When did your first start writing?

I have written a couple of marketing books that were released as ebooks a few years ago. I also frequently write official company communications, press releases and blog posts. I also write on my personal blog, but not too frequently. On my blog, I typically write about motivation and ideas. 

Is there any particular author or book that influenced you in any way either growing up or as an adult?

While growing up, I was heavily influenced by Enid Blyton's works. I used to read one novel a day as a child. As a teen, Harry Potter played a big role in my life and I have JK Rowling to thank for that. My recent favourite is Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger. I read it a few months ago, and it gave me the push I needed to write my own novel. I really liked how Holden Caulfield's character developed as the pages turned. 

What inspired you to write this particular book?

I grew up in Shimla, which is a little hill station nestled in the Himalayas. Life is very different there compared to major cities and metros. I had an interesting set of characters based on the people around me, and there was a story waiting to be written. So I wrote.

What was your favorite chapter (or part) to write and why?

My favourite part is the ending. That's when all the feelings and actions of Mrityunjoy Roy's character reach a decisive point and that's when he makes the choices he's supposed to make.

When She Smiled is book that relays how important little decisions and choices influence our destiny and I believe everyone can relate to that. 

What is best writing advice you can give?

Hustle. Take time out, drown down all the noise, take yourself out of your comfort zone, and just write. Writer's block is merely an old wives tale. If you have something to write about, anything to write about, just go ahead and write it down. It doesn't matter how bad you write. Putting down your thoughts into words is the only way good writing is done. If you keep writing every day, soon your book will be finished.

Is there anything else you'd like your readers to know about the book?

Its coming out in February next year, in digital and paperback. It will be available worldwide in all major ecommerce stores and in major bookstores.

If you'd like to win a free copy, then you may sign up for the Goodreads giveaway here.

To get the latest updates and developments before the launch of the book, you may sign up here.

About the book:

Mrityunjoy Roy is a fifteen year old Bengali who has spent the last ten years of his life growing up in Shimla. 

While his family is completely academically oriented, he wants something more. 

Finally he meets Akanksha in school, who turns his world upside down with her gorgeous looks and mind boggling smile. 

As fate would have it, she joins his tuition, and thus begins the torrid year of puppy love, romance, heartbreak, tragedy, and self discovery. 

Set among the scenic Shivalik hills of Shimla when mobile phones and internet were non-existent, this is a story of how an average young teenager comes to terms with his destiny. 

About the author:

Hi. My name is Ritoban Chakrabarti and I am a full time Internet Marketer… That was easy.

Well, I haven’t shared my past anywhere else, so I’ll try to be as clear as possible.

I used to be a good student in school because my parents forced me to study long hours (I’m glad they did). As I reached 9th and 10th grade, my main motive was to get in the Armed Forces, but somehow I had a big fracture that shattered those dreams.
So, I did my Computer Science Engg from UIET in the beautiful city Chandigarh. My college days are fully responsible for what I am today.

I have loved the internet since I got my internet connection in 2005. Earlier, I used to just surf and chat and make friends in social networks. But, slowly I started developing websites for fun. I love creating things and therefore I used to build websites without any motive of earning.

By some twisted change of fate, I somehow got a few people who wanted me to build/code their websites for them and were willing to pay me good money for doing so. Now that’s what I liked: ‘People were paying me for doing something I loved’. So, I got involved in freelancing and used to charge a nominal amount for my work. I always overdelivered on my projects and got amazing ratings/reviews.

After doing that for about 6 months, I suddenly thought of launching my own product on Joomla (I love this CMS). So, after about 3-4 weeks of effort, I launched ReadyMadeJoomla with no marketing knowledge, no launch tactics, no list, no planning, no affiliates, no nothing! It was just me and the product in the Clickbank marketplace.

Somehow, people started buying the product and affiliates started promoting it. So, I made quite a lot of sales (which gave me the initial capital to invest further) and it still sells a few copies each week.
In November 2008, I had my CAT exam (MBA Entrance) for which I got a few calls for great colleges in India. But, I didn’t appear for any interviews because I had decided I would get totally involved in Internet Marketing.

I always hated ‘working for somebody’ because I wanted to do what I wanted to do, and when I wanted to do it. There is a sort of magic when you don’t work under somebody: ‘You have a freedom and peace of mind unlike any other job’.

I like experimenting and discovering new techniques that I can implement and also teach others. I believe information should be free.

Visit me on Twitter and Facebook.


Nikita Johri said...

Lovely Interview Beth..:)
I read Ritoban's book and althought it is sweet, I too was not really engaged in the book. I expected more from it.
Loved your blog...

Read my Review here:

-Nikita @ Njkinny's World of Books & Stuff

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